ERK Signaling pp 255-267 | Cite as

3D Organotypic Culture Model to Study Components of ERK Signaling

  • Athina-Myrto ChioniEmail author
  • Rabia Tayba Bajwa
  • Richard Grose
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1487)


Organotypic models are 3D in vitro representations of an in vivo environment. Their complexity can range from an epidermal replica to the establishment of a cancer microenvironment. These models have been used for many years, in an attempt to mimic the structure and function of cells and tissues found inside the body. Methods for developing 3D organotypic models differ according to the tissue of interest and the experimental design. For example, cultures may be grown submerged in culture medium and or at an air–liquid interface. Our group is focusing on an air–liquid interface 3D organotypic model. These cultures are grown on a nylon membrane-covered metal grid with the cells embedded in a Collagen-Matrigel gel. This allows cells to grow in an air–liquid interface to enable diffusion and nourishment from the medium below. Subsequently, the organotypic cultures can be used for immunohistochemical staining of various components of ERK signaling, which is a key player in mediating communication between cells and their microenvironment.

Key words

Organotypic culture 3D models Tissue culture 



We would like to thank Miss Chandy Bundy for Fig. 1, which was part of her M.Sc. project under Dr. Chioni’s supervision.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Athina-Myrto Chioni
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rabia Tayba Bajwa
    • 1
  • Richard Grose
    • 2
  1. 1.Biomolecular Sciences Department, School of Life Sciences, Pharmacy and ChemistryKingston Univesity LondonKingston Upon Thames, SurreyUK
  2. 2.Barts Cancer InstituteQueen Mary University of LondonLondonUK

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